Wednesday, March 20, 2013

"Big Eagle" Ice Fishing

Eagle Lake.  A confusing name in its simplest form with the State of Maine housing 3 water bodies sporting the name - Eagle Lake, and two others named Eagle Pond.  Luckily one is located in the southern portion of the state and therefore does not find its way into the folklore and stories told here in Northern Maine.  That only leaves two lakes to distinguish between, so in true Maine fashion, the simple solution was to rename one and thus the larger water body became unofficially “Big Eagle Lake” or just “Big Eagle”.  This is the second lake in the chain of lakes that form the headwaters of the famed Allagash River.  Enough rambling...more fishing!  About 40 miles of pavement and 75 miles of gravel logging road separate my house from this famed fishing hole.  By leaving the house at 4:00a.m. we were able to navigate the majority of those miles before we reached prime fishing time.  As soon as we arrived, we unloaded our gear and piled onto snowsleds to make the final trek of our journey down onto the frozen expanse. We drove down the winding path through the trees descending into the waterway until we broke out onto the lake.  The lack of camps and it's remoteness adds a feel to the lake that cannot be described until experienced.  We made short order of drilling through the 30 inches of ice and dropping our baits into the depths.  Preferences for bait varied, but my preferred setup was a large lake smelt 2-3' off the bottom in hopes of hooking onto one of the monster togue that are rumored to inhabit the lake.  The day started with Mike Michaud "The Legend" (check him out via our guides page!) hooking onto a nice 3 pound laker.  Before it had cleared the hole, Ron Soucy had his own battle on with what would be our largest fish of the day.  The 5 pounder was beautifully spotted with a forest green/black background.  We followed up those with four other togue in the 3-4 pound range, caught by Tim, John, Corey and myself.  In between the togue, I managed to hook into two small cusk and Rocky Bard also picked one up.  The action was steady, with several flags in between to keep us running.  Unfortunately not all parties were able to catch fish with Jesse and Bob getting skunked, but for every day you go without fish, you are that much closer to catching a monster.  The weather was beautiful and as we rode home, I watched the sun set and a feeling settled over me that all was right...or maybe it was just exhaustion!  

Check out the action in the photos below.  I also captured lots of video footage that I will try to compile in the near future and get posted.  Also, open water season is knocking on the door so stay tuned for lots of upcoming action!

Monday, March 4, 2013

Ice Fishing Video

This is the most recent creation by Ridge Runners & River Rats.  It is a compilation of video from the outing described in my recent post on Madawaska Lake.  I tried to keep it a realistic length for people to watch and if you have comments on how to make it better, just let me know.  Enjoy!